Saturday, February 28, 2015

Storage Facility Star Trek Ad (Proposed)

We see the Starship Enterprise (from the TV show Star Trek) floating in space, and we hear the voiceover, from the opening titles of the TV show Star Trek: "Space, the final frontier…" Then a giant hand grabs the Starship Enterprise and seemingly pulls it across the galaxy, and we zoom out to see a woman holding the Starship Enterprise (which was on a shelf, mounted on a {previously unseen, due to the framing of the opening shot} stand in front of a star field backing, which gave the illusion that it was actually in outer space) in a cluttered room filled with Sci-Fi memorabilia, and she says to her husband: "I'm getting rid of this; we're running out of space." Then her husband pleads with her not to throw out his Starship Enterprise, and the announcer chimes in, saying: "Space problem? Get the extra space you need to store your cherished possessions at (whatever storage facility)!"

Friday, February 27, 2015

Amazon Fire TV Voice-Controlled Remote Spaghetti Western Ad (Proposed)

I saw a couple of great old spaghetti westerns recently (For a Few Dollars More, Sabata) where gunfighters show off their skill by shooting very small objects from distance and occasionally making them do things (sticks are made into crosses, apples are shot from trees, boot spurs are made to spin and stop, etc.), and that made me think it would be fun to see spaghetti western gunfighter guys watching TV and shooting at the TV controls to change the channel, turn up the volume, play a DVR recording, turn the TV off and on, etc. And then I thought this concept would make for a memorable approach to advertising the voice-activated remote for Amazon's Fire TV.

So we'd see an old west saloon with spaghetti western gunfighter characters, and they'd be shooting at the TV set as a means of remote control, changing channels, turning the volume up and down, turning the TV set off and on (it bothers some card players), etc. And the announcer would say that in the old days, it was difficult, and sometimes required skill, to operate a television by remote control. But now with the new Amazon Fire TV remote, you simply talk into it, and it does what you want it to.

The Zombie Song

(To the tune of "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head")

Brain drops keep fallin' from my head,
I'm decomposing ever since I have been dead,
But dyin's not for me, 'cause,
I've been brought back to life a fresh-eating zombie,
And I want meat,
I want your bodies to eat.

This is "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head" by B. J. Thomas:

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Antidepressant Cartoon Characters Ad (Joke/Proposed)

I was watching old Warner Bros cartoons with my niece on Boomerang recently when I saw a Foghorn Leghorn cartoon with the weasel in it. And this weasel is always up for anything, licking his chops and saying: "Yeah yeah yeah!" Well, that got me to thinking he might make a good antidepressant mascot, seeing as how he's always so energetic, enthusiastic and optimistic. And then I thought the effects of the antidepressant could be demonstrated through the attitudes of cartoon characters, with Beaky Buzzard being the 'before', saying: "Uh, nope, nope, nope..." and the weasel being the 'after', saying: "Yeah yeah yeah!"

Middle aged people would all know these characters, so it might be especially good as a spot for an antidepressant aimed at that age demographic.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Gas-X Bootylicious Ad (Joke/Proposed)

In this joke/proposed ad for Gas-X, we see a music video scene where a female pop singer is dancing, showing off her 'bootylicious' backside, and she is dancing along with a few backup dancers, and they are all shaking their butts and twerking and such, and just then, the singer lets out an audible fart. Then we hear the song halt (with that needle scraping off of a record sound effect), and the backup dancers make bad smell grimaces and wave their hands in front of they faces. Then the announcer says: "It's hard to be 'bootylicious' when you have gas." Then we see the slogan: "Gas-X: Defenders of Bootyliciousness."

Monday, February 23, 2015

Discover Frog Protection Kermit the Frog Ads (Proposed)

The Discover “Frog Protection” spot is apparently quite popular with TV viewers, so I thought it might be fun for Discover to extend it into a campaign, using Kermit the Frog (and Miss Piggy) from the Muppets.

In the first of these ads, the guy from the current “Frog Protection” ad is talking to himself on the phone, and the credit card customer service representative asks his cardholder doppelganger/alter ego: “Oh, Frog Protection. Why do you need Frog Protection?” And the cardholder guy says: “Well…” and we dissolve into a flashback showing how the villainous Kermit the Frog lookalike character, Constantine (from Muppets Most Wanted), stole his identity, and it got him arrested and ruined his credit, and so he wants to be protected from criminal frog fraudsters from now on.

Then, in the next ad, we could see Kermit the Frog, and he is threatened by a violent ring of villainous credit card forgers and identity thieves, but along comes Miss Piggy and she Karate chops the villains and sends them scampering away, running for their lives. Then the announcer says that Discover’s fraud protection is as effective as Miss Piggy’s frog protection in protecting you from credit card fraud.

Then, after these and a few more ads, Kermit the Frog, a very well-loved and highly trusted character I think, could become the ad mascot for Discover’s fraud protection service, and Miss Piggy could be the frog protection enforcer mascot, much in the same way the Peanuts characters are the ad mascots for MetLife Insurance.

It’s a shame nobody thought of this earlier to tie it in to the release of Muppets Most Wanted.

Here’s Discover’s original “Frog Protection” commercial:

(BTW: I don’t think the Discover “Frog Protection” ad works well within the confines of the “We treat you like you’d treat you” campaign, because nobody but a crazy person would actually argue with themselves over the misunderstanding of the words “frog” and “fraud”. But as a standalone ad without that campaign slogan foisted upon it, or extended into its own campaign, it’s pretty fun, and apparently a lot of people like it for its affable silliness.)

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Coca-Cola Beach Misfortunes Ad

In this spot for Coke, we see a young man buy a coke from a food stand at the beach, but then a young woman breaks a string on her acoustic guitar, so the young man gives her his bottle of Coke. (Maybe he’s just trying to distract her from changing the string to help everyone avoid hearing more unrequested outdoor folk music?) But just as she takes hold of the bottle, an elderly nun’s car starts being towed away, so the young woman gives the bottle of Coke to the old nun. Oh, but then the (I think) lifeguard stand explodes in a fireball, and the lifeguard is barely saved in the nick of time by a fireman, and so the elderly nun gives the lifeguard the bottle of Coke. Oh, but just then… And in the end, a meteorite (I think) destroys the food stand, and the food guy gets the Coke back, but then maybe there’s some alien invader or something?

Yes, things just keep going from bad to worse in this ad, and just as someone gets handed the bottle of Coke, something else that’s even more catastrophic happens. And that got me to thinking: hey, maybe the Coke is causing all of these disasters! No, really; just watch the commercial: every time someone gives the bottle of Coke to someone else, something even worse happens to someone else! Maybe if nobody ordered, bought, drank, or gave away any Coca-Cola products whatsoever, the beach would be peaceful and safe again. Or at least, that’s what it seems like from what we’re seeing in this spot. But at least the guy who started it all by selling Coca-Cola products had his livelihood destroyed: it serves him right for selling something that causes so much destruction!

(BTW: I am only joking here, and I like Coca-Cola. But it’s hard not to read this ad in this manner when you see the pattern emerge.)

Wow, I am totally surprised that I cannot find this catastrophic Coke commercial online tonight. But people watching the Oscars all saw it, unless they left the room.

Verizon Camping Ad

In this fun ad for Verizon, we see a lit-up tent out in the wilderness at night, and they ask: “Are there bedtimes still out here?” And then I thought maybe they should ask: “Are there inbred cannibal hillbillies out here?” And then we see the father putting on Star Wars by projecting it onto the inside of their tent using his smartphone. And I thought maybe he should be showing The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, or maybe Wrong Turn. (We didn’t see if his kids asked: “Are we there yet?” for hours in the drive up there. But I heard they did.)

Here’s the campy cellular commercial:

Citi Mobile Airport Ad

In this ad for Citi Mobile, a family of four waits in a line at the airport when the mother reminds her deadbeat husband he almost stiffed the dog sitter. (Maybe he’s trying to get rid of some annoying yippy dogs? That might be understandable.) So he pays with Citi Mobile before they board the plane for some island with no phone service. Well, mom says out loud that there’s no service on the island, and the kids don’t like that idea one bit, so they use their cell phones to call in bomb threats that get the airport cleared and the flights cancelled, making the calls with their mother’s phone they pickpocketed from her handbag. And so the parents get arrested (It serves them right for trying to separate their children from their cell phone service!), and the kids get to live parent-free for years to come, with no limits on their cell phone usage or Internet connectivity: yea!

(Just kidding: the kids have to go to the island and become so despondent without their cell phones that they drown in an attempt to flee the island by swimming, deaths guaranteed by their efforts to hold their cell phones up out of the water while they swim for miles in ocean currents: oh, the humanity! And, naturally, their parents are jailed for child abuse.)

Here’s the flighty spot (I saw the shorter spot with a slightly different ending on the Oscars):

JC Penney Cinderella Ad

I like this tie-in with Cinderella for JC Penney, where they refer to fairy godmothers, pumpkins, etc., but I think my proposed Cinderella ad for Zappos where I use the slogan: “One pair of shoes can change everything” works even better. See if you don’t agree:

Oops, I thought you could compare them, but I can’t seem to find JC Penney’s ad online (!). But here’s an article about it from Adage (If JC Penney would put their ads online so we could find them easily, more people might see them.):

Mercedes Road Warrior Ad

Earlier I posted a proposed Mercedes ad featuring Julius Caesar to demonstrate the great safety features that help drivers avoid accidents. Well, this Road Warrior-themed spot works every bit as well. This ad is wonderfully inspired, and it’s the best of the Mercedes safety features ads, as well as the best of the Road Warrior-inspired car ads I’ve seen on television. (I wrote a proposed Road Warrior ad a while ago for Tesla, but that was showing the virtue of electric vs. gasoline, so it’s an entirely different concept and selling point.)

So this ad shows a woman driving in her silver Mercedes SUV, and she’s being assailed by Road Warrior-type characters trying to wreck her and such (which is funny, because where I live, the people driving silver Mercedes are the most dangerous drivers on the road!), just like in the movie The Road Warrior, but her car’s safety features keep saving her by braking automatically, swerving to miss objects, etc. It’s a totally brilliant way to demonstrate and sell safety features! (I should have thought of that, but I was too busy thinking about how electric cars would free you from fighting over gas resources, personified by the Road Warrior villains.) Great job!

And the tag for this ad is brilliant, in my opinion, which is unusual for TV ads in general. Usually TV ad tags are annoying or superfluous or deflate the ad’s humor through overkill, but not in this case. Here, the tag ads a whole new joke based on what we’ve seen, and it’s actually fun and welcome. And what we see is that the woman has made it home safely, but then one of the Road Warrior brutes drives into the driveway next to hers, so they’re neighbors (!). And so this tag tells us, in a funny way, that she has to go through this stuff every day. And, it suggests that her neighbor’s job is to try to wreck her car, so she really needs the safety features.

This tag reminds me very much of those old Warner Bros. cartoons where the coyote and the sheepdog punch in timecards in the morning, and then the coyote tries to steal the sheep, and the sheepdog stops him and beats him up. It’s the kind of cleverness that a tag really needs to work, and this one has it in spades.

Great ad, great tag: great job!

JC Penney “The Man Makes the Clothes” Ad

This is a really nice point they make here in this spot for JC Penney menswear. At first I didn’t get where they were going with it, but then they drove the point home, and it’s a good point.

(What the ad says is that we hear that the clothes make the man, but they think the man makes the clothes. I thought they meant that “The Man”, as in an oppressive entity, makes the clothes, forcing us into rigid styles that are not true to the individual, and that they’re going to free us from “The Man” with their more personal clothes, but instead they make the point that a man can make the look of his clothes happen in the way he wears them, thereby creating a specific personal style.)

But the problem with this point in an ad for menswear is this: if the man makes the clothes work, or creates the style in the way he wears it, then what difference does it make where he buys his clothes?

But maybe that’s what they’re trying to say here anyway without having to come out and say it: men make their style work, so why buy your clothes at expensive clothing stores or from overprices brands when you can get it here at JC Penney for much less? Maybe they want us to draw our own conclusion, like I just did, and not beat us over the head with an overly specific message.

(Again, I’m sorry, but I can’t seem to find this ad online to show you. But I’m sure it will make the rounds on TV.)

Comcast Xfinity Emily’s Oz Ad

Wow, what a breathtakingly beautiful and fun ad! A blind girl describes what The Wizard of Oz looks like to her, and we see it all gorgeously realized in amazingly detailed CGI animation. How cute, heartwarming, and specific to the product/service can you get? It’s a winner!

(For me, ads should be about the product or service being advertised, such that the ad works completely in service to informing us about and attracting us to the product or service. This ad does this in spades! Many ads do not: just a snappy, vapid slogan and some visuals, or some obtuse generic claim or tangential emotional thing; that’s not good advertising to me when we forget the product instantly after the ad is over. People who see this ad will remember it and what it was advertising, and that’s what makes it all-around great. No really, this knocks it out of the park! Heartwarming, informational, memorable: what a great job!)

Here’s the spot (You may have to scroll down a few inches to play the video of the ad: sorry):